A Conservative candidate for British prime minister has apologized for any hurt she might have caused her rival over comments that suggested being a mother was an advantage in the job.

Andrea Leadsom said sorry to Theresa May, who has no children, amid the uproar touched off by her Times of London interview on Saturday. Leadsom insisted she didn't want motherhood to be part of the campaign and offered regret for anyone who might have thought otherwise.

The two women are in a runoff to replace Prime Minister David Cameron, who is resigning after British voters rejected his advice and chose to leave the European Union.

Leadsom told The Daily Telegraph newspaper that she believed that having children has "no bearing on the ability to be PM."